Maddie, Gracie, and Bridget spend a combined total of 26 hours per week at the gym. That does not include driving time. Or fixing hair time. Or finding the #$@%& hair brush so we can actually fix hair time. During competition season, that total climbs much higher. It's a 50 weeks per year sport. People look at us with perplexed looks on their faces sometimes, because... well, what? How does that even work?
Short answer: I don't really know. We just keep going?
I've written here before about our gradual commitment to gymnastics—how it was a fun thing to do to burn off some energy in the middle of a Colorado Springs winter when Maddie was 18 months old, but how unlikely it was that she'd still be doing it down the line. It's probably safe to say that at nearly 11, we're down the line. Gracie and Bridget first experienced gymnastics from the vantage point of their infant carseats; Gracie got a late start in her own class at 2.5, and Bridget? Enrolled since she could walk. Literallly. She didn't take her first steps until 17 months old, and has been at the gym ever since. Every so often we ask them if they want to quit gym to play sport x, y, or z; the answer is always NO. We squeeze in piano, but all other structured after-school activities are pretty much out in the Dillow house.
Gracie demonstrating what "ain't no thang" means.
Maddie still shakes her head and scoffs at her lame-o mama who quit a short-lived gymnastics career following a fall off the beam in the 3rd grade.
Bridget used to fall down at least 10 times a day; now she can walk across the beam completely unassisted. It's really nothing short of miraculous.
We're realize now it's best not to make predictions about what's down the line as far as gymnastics is concerned. As long as they feel this way about gym, we'll just stick with the short answer and keep on going.
All photos courtesy of ImagingB Photography